Jean in a Zang Toi gown at the ABT gala

Who is Jean Shafiroff and what is she about? I met Jean three years ago at the American Ballet Theater gala when she waltzed into Lincoln Center in a beautiful lavender ball gown. This look was reminiscent of a bygone era when "Gone With the Wind" and Vivien Leigh dominated popular culture. I complimented her on her gown but due to the enormity of her dress, she was unable to hear me as we remained a foot apart. After raising my voice three octaves, she broke out into a beautiful smile explaining who designed her dress and how she chose her attire. A week later, I ran into her at the New York City ballet gala where she was resplendent in a red gown bedecked with jewels. My curiosity was once again piqued by her massive gown and she again responded with warmth, elegance and frivolity-a rare combination in her social stratosphere.

Two years elapsed until I saw her again attending the Monique Lhuillier store opening in a Gucci fur, Prada bag and Fendi dress-a multifaceted hodge-podge yet carefully planned designer look with her hair gathered in a bun on top of her head. When asked to describe her outfit her ebullient enthusiasm made me realize Jean not only loves fashion but enjoys discussing, preparing and displaying her look; what a great subject for my first fashion profile.

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